Thursday, September 16, 2004

We've arrived

Compiled at Englefield Green – West London - 11:17 16th September

We have arrived! (or as Kym Oliver would say – ‘the ego has landed!’)

The second leg of our trip was very very long and although I managed to score an exit row with heaps of leg room it still seemed to drag on.. I slept for over half the flight and had two interesting and travel-savy guys next to me who helped fill the time with idle chatter and London and Europe travel tips.. Carly did manage to get onto the flight at the last minute and unluckily for her she did not have the pleasure of an exit row like myself and enjoyed the close company of two large gentleman either side of her on one of the side groups of 3 seats – a far cry from our two separate seats up the back of the brisbane-singapore leg!! Although we had lost the sunlight by that stage, the views of all of the lights across some of the biggest urbanised areas in the world were amazing as the flight tracked from Singapore over central India, across and past Warsaw & Poland, then over northern Germany and Western Europe, then across the channel and into England.

We landed yesterday at 5am, and quickly passed through customs etc with all of our gear.
Heathrow customs was pretty uneventful, with the only highlight being able to skip the large queues of our mainly Australian passport-holding 747-400 passengers and rush through an empty line-up for English citizens with Carly holding a ‘right to abode’ in her passport – I just said “I’m with her!” and through we went..

Smith Family friend Terry Lambrose collected us at the Heathrow Airport car park Coke machine as planned and then gave us the full tour of the area around where he and his wife Kaye live, the scenic and quaint village of Englefield Green. It’s hard to describe but it is a small village near Windsor Castle and Eton with all of the little attributes you see on UK TV shows – the local cricket ground and clubhouse next the town centre shopping strip, the abundant parklands and wooded forests containing squirrels, foxes, deer, and the occaisional Inspector Morse murder, and of course the local church and rows and rows of 18th & 19thC terrace houses. On a lighter side, their village is nearby the suburban centre of Staines, of Ali G fame!! Yes, you know, home of the Staines Massive.... I hope I’m getting a laugh from my brother Mike and also James Plumb – WESTSIDE!!

Carly and Terry Lambrose at Windsor Great Park, with Windsor Castle in the far background

before the day was out we had chased some of the Queen’s deer as we walked though the Windsor Great Park, seen some spectacular views of Windsor Castle down the 3 mile long “The Long Walk” pathway, been shown all around the local area including Egham high street, Staines, and Runnymeade (where the Magna Carta was signed).. later in the day I had my first Sainsbury’s shopping experience where I walked around multiplying the pounds prices into dollars so I culd see how much everything was (and yes brett, everything is bloody orange!!).. last night we dined at an excellent local Italian restaurant in the Village and then visited one of the 7 village pubs for our first English Ale.. I couldn’t remember which beer it was we drank as the jetlag had definitely caught up with me by then and I had started to doze off while standing up.. after one ‘half’ it was time to go home..

day two is turning out to be another lazy one with cs and I doing some preparations being done for the job hunting we will soon be doing.. we will be booking some flights to Rome today or tomorrow for a 10-14 day holiday which will be starting either Tuesday or Wednesday next week.. then when we return to London it will be all go with the job hunting and apartment search on in full earnest..

bye for now.



At Tue Sep 21, 01:31:00 pm GMT+10 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to know that you got there safely!
Can you possibly post some photos on the blog?
or maybe send some out.


At Thu Sep 23, 01:48:00 pm GMT+10 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

God save the Queen (and the rest of Europe).



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